Nora friends attending assembly

Nora Friends Shine at Aspen Assembly

Nora friends were the central focus of yesterday’s assembly at Aspen Elementary. The event was a culmination of activities throughout the year in which students got to build friendships with Nora friends. In a video, students expressed how much they learned through their friendships and how they came to understand that our differences make us special and connect us in a special way. Since its founding in 2016, The Nora Project, a non-profit organization, has grown from six classrooms to eighty-five, with teachers challenging students to practice empathy, exercise moral courage, and recognize the fundamental truth that as human beings, we are all more alike than different.

Students painting shirts

Students Design Their Own Shirts

Kindergarten classes at Aspen Elementary painted shirts with characters from Eric Carle books last Friday. Eric Carle is the acclaimed creator of brilliantly illustrated picture books for young children.

Fifth grade band and orchestra practice together.

Practice Makes Perfect

Fifth grade band and orchestra students at Aspen Elementary practiced the “Star Spangled Banner” on Monday. They are preparing for a performance during a basketball shoot off on Friday.

The Frog Lady Presents Her Animals

The Frog Lady and Her Reptiles Visit Aspen

The Frog Lady brought many of her reptile and amphibian friends for a visit to Mrs. Szoke’s first grade class. The students met a bearded dragon, a tegu lizard, a box turtle, a tortoise, a chameleon, a corn snake and more. The children had great fun watching some of the animals eat worms. They also learned about their habits and lifestyles. The bearded dragon, the corn snake and the turtle were so friendly that students got to pet them.

Students in classroom

Nora Project Teaches Empathy and Builds Friendships

Ms. Pogachnik’s fifth-grade class at Aspen Elementary had their second visit with their Nora Project friends on Thursday. The Nora Project aims to normalize difference, demystify disability and promote meaningful connections between students and their peers with disabilities.

Narnia Comes to Aspen

All Aspen Elementary students received a treat today. Actors from Libertyville’s Improv Playhouse performed an adaptation of the classic tale “The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe” during an afternoon assembly. The actors brought the world of Narnia to life. The special event was in celebration of all the reading that Aspen students have been doing.

Student band performing

Students Give Stellar Performance

Elementary South and Aspen Elementary’s fourth and fifth grade band concert on Tuesday showed just how far students have come this year. They played beautifully.

Students playing games

Nora Project Brings Students Together

On Wednesday, fifth-grade students in Mrs. Pogachnik’s class were introduced to four guest students from the middle schools as part of the Nora Project. They played games as a way to get to know each other better. It was great to see how well the students connected. Co-founded by an educator and the parents of a child with disabilities, the Nora Project aims to normalize difference, demystify disability, and promote meaningful connections between students and their peers with disabilities. 

Nora Project students

Nora Project Teaches Empathy at Aspen

As part of the Nora Project, two Elementary South third-grade students visited fourth-grade students in Mrs. Chandler’s class at Aspen Elementary. The students got to know each other by playing games such as Bingo and Hedbanz. They also decorated frames. The Nora Project aims to normalize difference, demystify disability, and promote meaningful connections between students and their peers with disabilities. This is the first time that Aspen is participating in the program.

orchestra students practice

Orchestra Students Learn New Things With Ease

Last week, Aspen fifth-grade orchestra students learned a new finger pattern. They picked it up right away and sounded great.